What Tools Do You Use to Support Your Appraisal Adjustments?

McKissock Survey

Excerpts: Here’s a tally of the most popular answers—tools that were either selected or written in by multiple respondents. We’ve included “paired sales/matched pair analysis” in the list as well, even though it’s a method rather than a digital or software tool, because it was mentioned by so many appraisers.

In addition to the top answers listed above, we received many other write-in responses. Other methods and tools that our survey participants said they use to support appraisal adjustments include:

    • Market knowledge/research
    • Market extraction
  • Manual sales comparison
  • Regression analysis
  • Segmented market analysis

To read more, click here

My comments: First survey for this topic I have ever seen. Very interesting. Don’t miss the appraisers’ comments!


Frank Lloyd Wright’s Iconic Carmel-by-the-Sea House Sells for $22 Million

The 1,400-square-foot property sold for its eight-figure asking price

Excerpts: Though Frank Lloyd Wright has long been admired for his ability to artfully integrate his iconic structure’s into the natural world, you’ll only find one near the ocean: the Mrs. Clinton Walker House. Located on Carmel Point near Carmel-by-the-Sea—a celeb-favored California enclave—the one-of-a-kind home..

Della Walker—widow of Minneapolis lumber executive Clinton Walker—wrote to Wright in 1945 asking him to take on the seaside project. As a woman living alone, she noted that she hoped for privacy and protection, and “a house as enduring as the rocks but as transparent and charming as the waves and delicate as the seashore.”

To read more click here 

My comments: I have been to Carmel many times as I used to live in nearby Salinas. It is a Very Special Place.

Local appraisers told me about the street numbering: A unique characteristic of Carmel-by-the-Sea is that there are no street addresses. Properties are identified, for example, as being on the “west side of San Antonio Street, 3 houses south of 12th Avenue”. In addition to this, many owners give their homes a name. Wonder what AMCs think about that!


Black-Owned Homes Appreciated Fastest In The Pandemic – Zillow research

Black Americans’ housing wealth has made strides, but remains well below that of the typical U.S. household


The ratio between Black home values and home values overall is closing.

Black home values increased faster than home values for all other races over the course of the pandemic, giving an equity boost to Black homeowners.

Black home values appreciated 42.5% from pre-pandemic to January 2023, compared to 38.2% for overall home values and 37.8% for white home values.

Some markets saw extraordinary growth in Black home values over the pandemic. In Detroit, a market that has struggled with the lasting effects of redlining and thus is no stranger to housing inequalities, Black home values have increased 51.7% and the ratio of Black home values to home values overall has moved up nine percentage points since February 2020. Other markets in the Midwest, such as Kansas City, Chicago, Cleveland, Milwaukee and Louisville, also saw large improvements over this period to the Black home value ratio – all seeing the ratio increase at least five percentage points.

The West Coast didn’t see the same progress.

To read more about Zillow research, click here

To see the original redlining maps click here

To read more detail on Bay Area racial discrimination, click here

My comments: Good to see some positive data on Black homeownership. Near where I live, there is one of the highest patterns of racial segregation in California. Substantial redlining started in the 1950s, supported by FHA and appraisal associations. It stopped in the 1970s, but the damage was done.

My previous home had a deed restriction saying that “Negroes and Chinese” could not purchase the house. They could only be servants. This was very common in the San Francisco Bay Area. Removing them from the deeds was difficult. Passed in 2022, a new bill requires the removal of ‘racial covenants’ from California property records.Click here for the 4 ways, plus information on why I take ads, etc.


New in the March issue of Appraisal Today

How to use less gasoline and save money with today’s high gas prices!

We all drive. Some of us drive a lot. Some use pickup trucks, and some use high-mileage cars. Gasoline is costly. You can save money by getting more miles per gallon, whatever type of vehicle you drive.

Many years ago, long before hybrids, a friend of mine won a “highest mileage” contest. How did he do it? He kept a steady low speed as possible, avoiding stopping whenever possible and accelerating very slowly.

I have always used these techniques when I am low on gas and not near a gas station. Now, I am trying to change my driving habits to do it even more because it saves so much money with current gas prices and doesn’t cost me anything except a bit of time lost.

When researching this article, I found that there were others advising this technique.

To read more about saving money on gasoline, plus 3+ years of previous issues, subscribe to the paid Appraisal Today.

If this article helped you save money when driving, it is worth the subscription price!


If you have any comments or info on any topics, please hit the reply button!! I’m always looking for something new ;>


Even in a Competitive Market, Here’s How Appraisers Can Grow Their Businesses

Excerpt: I believe that there are many industries and other lines of business that an appraiser can serve. The mortgage origination line of business is just one of them. I’ll point to some other opportunities in a moment, but none of them will be accessible to an appraiser who feels their only purpose is to serve the mortgage origination industry.

I don’t think of our work confined to an “appraisal industry” because I consider the business of providing valuation services, including real estate appraisal reports, to be a profession. We are not limited to providing services to a single industry, but rather are free to serve a wide range of businesses and industries, provided we can demonstrate competency and professionalism in our activities, upholding the confidence and trust required of the profession.

Trust and confidence are key to appraiser success and they have to be earned.

To read more, click here

My comments: Some interesting ideas from a 30 year appraiser.


What to Do When You’re Looking for Something to Do – Fix Your Templates!!

By Craig Capilla,Attorney

Excerpts: Ask yourself when you last read through the boilerplate language in your report template. I mean really read it, line by line, word by word. The answer might surprise you.

Well, I can tell you based on the reports that come across my desk that the answer won’t have been recent.

I’m writing this in the year 2023 but still receiving reports invoking the departure rule. Dated boilerplate language is everywhere I turn. Inconsistent and contradicting language abounds. Addenda attesting to the validity and acceptability of digital signatures is still prevalent.

And if you understand a semi-competent attorney can start to pick and prod at those kinds of inconsistencies to make the listener question your competency, wait until I tell you what they can do with a zoning classification that hasn’t been used in 15 or more years, or competing statements about the intended use of the appraisal.

The language that exists in your own report is probably the first place you should turn to tighten up your practice and reduce your risk.

To read more, click here

My comments: Read this article for more practical ideas while business is slow. This applies to both lender and non-lender appraisals. Very easy to do. Definitely good suggestions. I have seen some of the above in recent lender appraisals.


White House Replica in Indiana Listed for $8.4 Million

Excerpt: Designed to replicate 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. in Washington, DC, this White House–inspired home boasts an eye-popping 33,547 square feet of living space.

The five-bedroom mansion sits on a spectacular 45-acre lot. A two-story entry features double curved staircases and ornate columns. There are six fireplaces, a billiard room, two offices, a media room, and a vault with a wine cellar.

The property also comes with an 11,000-square-foot space that could be turned into a car museum, indoor event center, or recreational sports area. There are also four horse barns with living quarters, a riding arena, a guesthouse, and garages for up to 26 cars.

To read more and see lots of photos, click here

Scroll down the page to the Number 1 listing. To see the MLS for the property, click on the address


HOW TO USE THE NUMBERS BELOW. Appraisals are ordered after the loan application. These numbers tell you the future for the next few weeks. For more information on how they are compiled, click here.>www.appraisaltoday.com/order Or call 510-865-8041, MTW, 7 AM to noon, Pacific time.

My comments: Rates are going up and down. Some appraisers are very busy, and others have little work. Varies widely around the country.


Mortgage applications decreased 5.7 percent from one week earlier

Mortgage applications decreased 5.7 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending February 24, 2023.

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 5.7 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index decreased 4 percent compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index decreased 6 percent from the previous week and was 74 percent lower than the same week one year ago. The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index decreased 6 percent from one week earlier. The unadjusted Purchase Index decreased 3 percent compared with the previous week and was 44 percent lower than the same week one year ago.

“The 30-year fixed rate increased to 6.71 percent last week, the highest rate since November 2022, which drove a 6 percent drop in applications. After a brief revival in application activity in January when mortgage rates dropped to 6.2 percent, there has now been three straight weeks of declines in applications as mortgage rates have jumped 50 basis points over the past month,” said Joel Kan, MBA’s Vice President and Deputy Chief Economist. “Data on inflation, employment, and economic activity have signaled that inflation may not be cooling as quickly as anticipated, which continues to put upward pressure on rates.”

Added Kan, “Both purchase and refinance applications declined last week, with purchase index at a 28-year low for a second consecutive week. Purchase applications were 44 percent lower than a year ago, as homebuyers again retreat to the sidelines as higher rates crimp affordability. Refinance applications account for less than a third of all applications and remained more than 70 percent behind last year’s pace, as a majority of homeowners are already locked into lower rates.”

The refinance share of mortgage activity decreased to 31.8 percent of total applications from 32.5 percent the previous week. The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity increased to 8.1 percent of total applications.

The FHA share of total applications remained unchanged at 12.1 percent from the week prior. The VA share of total applications decreased to 11.6 percent from 12.0 percent the week prior. The USDA share of total applications decreased to 0.5 percent from 0.6 percent the week prior.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($726,200 or less) increased to 6.71 percent from 6.62 percent, with points increasing to 0.77 from0.75 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent loan-to-value ratio (LTV) loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo loan balances (greater than $726,200)remained at 6.44 percent, with points decreasing to 0.49 from 0.53 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate remained the same from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages backed by the FHA increased to 6.45 percent from 6.39 percent, with points increasing to 1.19 from 1.16 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages increased to 6.13 percent from 5.98 percent, with points remaining at 0.93 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 5/1 ARMs increased to 5.73 percent from 5.66 percent, with points decreasing to 0.86 from 0.97 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

The survey covers over 75 percent of all U.S. retail residential mortgage applications, and has been conducted weekly since 1990. Respondents include mortgage bankers, commercial banks, and thrifts. Base period and value for all indexes is March 16, 1990=100.


Ann O’Rourke, MAI, SRA, MBA
Appraiser and Publisher Appraisal Today

1826 Clement Ave. Suite 203 Alameda, CA 94501

Phone 510-865-8041

Email  ann@appraisaltoday.com


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